***I received this wine as a sample***
Last Wednesday and Thursday were incredibly busy, as they were full of back-to-back, marathon meetings. It should have been a quiet week for me at work, but, while many of my coworkers came to work at 10am and left by 5pm, I arrived at 8:30am to make sure that I had time to check email and do some work at my desk before starting 10-12 hours worth of meetings. Thankfully, there was dinner at the last meeting of the night, although only non-alcoholic beverages were served. After a day of serious discussions and negotiations with the same 25 people, I think many of us could have benefited from a break and a glass of wine. All in all, while most of the meetings were interesting and useful, I spent the latter part of both days looking forward to going home, having a nice glass of wine, catching up with Hubby, and watching Lindsey Vonn and Apollo Ono in the Olympics.
My wine of choice was the 2008 Willamette Valley Vineyards Whole Cluster Fermentation Pinot Noir. This is a bottle that the vineyard expects to be “the best vintage of the decade,” so you can imagine the anticipation when opening the wine. As I’ve mentioned in previous reviews of Willamette Valley Vineyards wine, the vineyard not only focuses on producing quality wine, but also on producing wine in an environmentally friendly way. If you are interested in reading more about their efforts, visit the sustainability page on their website.
As for the 2008 Whole Cluster Pinot Noir, it had a light-to-medium ruby color. On the nose, there were ripe strawberries and raspberries, followed by pomegranate, wood, and a touch of cocoa dust. In the mouth, the wine tasted of the candy coating on a candy apple, followed by cherries, strawberries, and pomegranates. There was also a hint of bitter herbs—parsley and thyme. The wine had a strong acidity, low tannins, and a light-to-medium body.
Is this worth a glass after work? Sure…you won’t be drinking anything out of the ordinary, but you’ll definitely have a decent, reliable glass of wine. At $19 this was an enjoyable wine, although it was missing the something special that I expected after falling in-love with other Willamette Valley Vineyards wines. That said, the Whole Cluster Pinot Noir is a wine that is ready to drink now and pairs well with food, so you shouldn’t shy away from it if your looking for a Pinot Noir under $20.